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The Best and Healthiest Egg to Eat


From the Dr. Mercola Site

 


Mother Earth News recently finished their latest egg-testing project, confirming their 2005 test results that showed true free-range eggs are far more nutritious than commercially raised eggs.

Compared to official U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) nutrient data for commercial eggs, eggs from hens raised on pasture may contain:

1/3 less cholesterol
1/4 less saturated fat
2/3 more vitamin A
2 times more omega-3 fatty acids
3 times more vitamin E
7 times more beta carotene
These dramatically differing nutrient levels are most likely the result of the differences in diet between free-range pastured hens, vs. commercially farmed hens.

Without citing any research of their own, most egg industry advocates hold fast to their claim that commercially farmed eggs are no different from pastured eggs, and that hens’ diets do not alter their eggs nutritional value in any significant way.

Mother Earth News points out the flawed and downright fraudulent definitions of “true free-range.” The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) defines “free-range” as chickens that have “access to the outside.” However, it does not define their diets, nor whether or not the “outside access” is to a cement courtyard or a field fit for foraging.

Sources:
Mother Earth News October/November 2007


Eggs are one of the healthiest foods in the world, and at their very best if you eat them raw. But the quality of your eggs is also important.

The REAL Definition of Free-Range Eggs

The nutritional difference between true free-range eggs and commercially farmed eggs is not an occasional fluke or misprint, as these findings are being backed up with a mounting body of evidence.

The fact that the USDA and other organizations (which are often funded or influenced by industry) refuse to acknowledge that there is a direct link between the diet of the bird and the nutritional value of their eggs, is a clear indicator that there are strong financial incentives at work – not nutritional science. Because clearly, “garbage in, garbage out” applies here as well. This general rule will never change – it applies equally to hens, beef cattle, dairy cows, and your own body.

And don’t be fooled by the egg industry’s double-speak definitions of what free-range really is. True free-range eggs are from hens that range freely outdoors on a pasture where they can forage for their natural diet, which includes seeds, green plants, insects, and worms. A hen that is let outside into a barren lot for a few minutes a day but is fed a diet of corn, soy, and cottonseed meals, plus synthetic additives, is NOT a free-range hen, and will not produce the same quality eggs as its foraging counterpart.

An additional issue that is important, but not discussed here, is the fact that the main ingredients of commercially raised hens' diets are genetically modified (GM).

As I reported recently, the three main GM ingredients in the United States’ food supply are corn, soy, and cottonseed. All the more reason to stay away from commercial eggs, even if they state “free-range” on their label.

Which Eggs to Buy, and Which You Should Avoid

Additionally, I would STRONGLY encourage you to AVOID ALL omega-3 eggs, as they are actually LESS healthy for you. Typically, the animals are fed poor-quality sources of omega-3 fats that are already oxidized. Also, omega-3 eggs do not last anywhere near as long as non-omega-3 eggs. Remember, omega- 3 eggs are highly perishable and should be avoided.

If you have to purchase your eggs from a commercial grocery store, I would advise getting free-range organic. Ideally, if at all possible it would be far preferable to purchase your eggs directly from your local farmer, because this way you can be certain of the quality. This may not be as hard as you think. In my experience, this is one of the easiest foods to find from local farmers.

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